These "complicated and elaborate" quilts generally have large central motifs, with much freehand curlicue infill. The centre is rarely confined, but instead "flows" into the central field of square diamonds. Elaborate corner motifs are present, with borders of swags or goosefeathers. Elizabeth Sanderson was said to be able to mark one or two of these tops per day with the help of her assistants, thus thousands must have been produced over the years. Certainly, large numbers of quilts in this style have survived.
Generally, while everyday patchwork and strippy quilts were "hand laid" or marked in the frame at home, more special quilts were sent away for marking. It is therefore supposed by Fitzrandolph and others that most local quilters lost the ability to draw out the more complex patterns, or to turn the corner in a border. Indeed, many of the later wholecloth quilts have more simplified designs and lack the elegance and skill of the earlier, Gardiner-style quilts marked at the turn of the 20th century.